Tom Brady Free Agency Odds: Could Brady Leave the Patriots?
In what has been a crazy five days beginning with the cancellation of the NBA last Wednesday night, we’d soon find out nearly all major sports held the same fate, including, most notably, college basketball and the 2020 NCAA Tournament.
While March Madness has slipped from our grasp, there are still ways to find sports betting action. As of Monday morning, the NFL will controversially proceed with the scheduled start of NFL free agency. There’s no bigger NFL free agency question than what team will Tom Brady end up playing for in Week 1 of the 2020 season, and lucky for us, we can bet on exactly that at legal US sportsbooks. There are similar markets for Philip Rivers, Andy Dalton, Jameis Winston, Teddy Bridgewater and Nick Foles at FanDuel.
Tom Brady NFL Free Agency Odds
All odds are courtesy of FanDuel and are accurate as of Monday, March 16, 2020 at 9 a.m. ET.
|New England Patriots||-250|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||+170|
|Los Angeles Chargers||+1000|
|San Francisco 49ers||+1300|
|Las Vegas Raiders||+1500|
|New York Giants||+4000|
Update: On Tuesday, Brady announced he won’t be returning to New England. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are now -290 favorites to land the quarterback.
The New England Patriots -250 are the heavy favorites to re-sign Brady, especially after Brady’s biggest prospective suiter, the Tennessee Titans, announced that they worked out a deal with Ryan Tannehill, re-signing the quarterback on a four-year $118 million deal. The Patriots’ odds moved from -195 to -250 early Monday morning.
It makes sense New England remains the favorite, but what doesn’t make sense is that Brady is not already locked in if they do in fact plan on bringing the 42-year-old back. Early reports said that Brady’s first phone conversation with head coach Bill Belichick regarding the quarterback’s return didn’t go so well. Remember the rumors that Belichick preferred keeping Garoppolo over Brady two offseasons ago?
The first week of NFL free agency could be a franchise-altering week, depending on where Brady ends up. And there are a lot of factors at play, including Brady’s age and declining performance.
A year removed from beating the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII, Brady, who once seemed ageless, began to show his mortality during the 2019-20 season. His 60.8 completion percentage was his lowest since 2013, and his second-lowest since 2004. He threw for less than 25 touchdown passes for only the second time since 2003, and his QB rating was his lowest since 2013.
So yes, Brady, the ageless wonder, is in fact getting old. The problem for the Patriots is, who can they get that will be better in the short term?
The Patriots drafted Jarrett Stidham in the 2019 NFL draft with their fourth-round pick, but the former Auburn quarterback isn’t anywhere close to being NFL-ready. The rookie completed two-of-four passes while throwing an interception in 2019-20.
Belichick could very well want to prove he can win without Brady, and Brady may want to prove he can win without Belichick.
If the latter is the case, then you have to think Brady is better off leaving for the NFC. Moving to the NFC means Brady will be able to avoid the two most recent NFL MVPs, Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson.
That makes the Tampa Bay Buccaneers the most likely non-Patriots option. The Buccaneers have a great receiving corps with Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, and the Bucs do seem prepared to move on from Jameis Winston. Once thought to be Tampa Bay’s franchise quarterback, the former Heisman Trophy winner has struggled to keep the ball away from defensive backs. Could Brady be the answer in Florida?
Other Tom Brady Free Agency Notes
While Brady’s agent, Don Yee, can start talking to teams at noon on Monday, Brady is under contract with the New England Patriots until Wednesday at 4 p.m. So sports bettors have some time to place their bets as Yee finds out what the market is like for Brady’s services.
And maybe that’s the reason for the delay. Both Brady and Belichick playing a game of chess, as they so often do on the football field but this time they’re facing each other, waiting to see what the market is like before moving their pieces.
I believe that Brady’s best chance to reach another Super Bowl is not in the AFC. Mahomes and Jackson have quickly gone from mere rookies to Goliaths, soaring over Brady in terms of raw talent while both playing on teams that are better suited for success. Brady isn’t stupid. He knows this too.